Sunday, September 28, 2008

ACL Festival

I just finished up the better part of the week in Austin, soaking up music, food, tequila, music and more music at the Austin City Limits Music Festival. I haven't finished writing about it and there are still plenty of pictures and a few more videos (actually you will find all of the videos at http://www.youtube.com/infomas ) but you can read about my time there at http://aclfestival.blogspot.com . As always, plenty of music that I hear in Austin ends up on The Promise. So check it out before it makes its way to my steam. 

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Melissa Etheridge in San Diego

Saturday August 30th

What a beautiful night in the desert. Near Alpine in or around San Diego County, way down I-8 lies an Indian reservation with a portable outdoor venue. With temperatures in the 70s and a nice breeze to keep us cool, it was the perfect night for a concert. In fact it was a perfect night to close out Melissa Etheridge's 2008 tour (sort of). My friend Kim is a long time member of Melissa's fan club, so when I join her for a show I'm always guaranteed great seats and 3rd row dead center was what we had last night.
Melissa's current tour is unique. She is telling her life story in song. Her latest CD, which is autobiographical, is the basis for this show. It makes for interesting pacing choices. Before the first hour was up, "Bring me some water" and "I'm the one" were gone. But it also allowed her to dig deep into her songbook, playing songs that had not been heard in concert in many years. Between each song Melissa would tell us short pieces of her life story that would be used to introduce and maybe explain the purpose of the next song. Most artists could never get away with this, but most of us know Melissa's story, from playing the bars in Long Beach, to her stealing a married woman and then watching that fall apart, to her finding "true love" and then her battle with cancer. It is a story with an uplifting message of hope and taking control of you own life. All of this worked well for Melissa. She continues to keep a solid rock band behind her with the amazing Philip Sayce on guitar. If he goes back to playing weekly at Molly Malone’s and you love great guitar playing and live in So.Cal., you must check him out. Two hours and forty minutes after it started, Melissa finished us off with a rousing version of “Like The Way I Do”.

Music Hall Link - Cowboy Junkies 4-1-1996 listen